View all 2018 projects

The International VELUX Award is a biennial competition for students of architecture. We challenge students from all over the world to work with daylight as an ever relevant source of light, life and joy. More than 600 student teams have submitted their daylight project to the International VELUX Award, and the jury has elected nine regional winners. See all winning projects here.

Cloud of the Polar Light

Regional Winner Eastern Europe and the Middle East - Daylight Investigations

Students: Anna Borisova and Kamilla Akhmetova
Teacher: Ilnar Akhtiamov and Rezeda Akhtiamova
School: Kazan State University of Architecture and Engineering
Country: Russian Federation

There are cities that are immersed in darkness for most of the year, with inhabitants who live and work with the polar night on a routine basis. Biorhythms collapse when people do not experience dawn from day to day, causing higher levels of addiction, suicide and accidents. The project suggests directing solar rays from outer space to the clouds above the city – thus allowing citizens to have a dawn that is almost real and gentle light during the long polar nights that occur for weeks on end.

This project is different from all the other projects the jury saw and they were intrigued by the amazing cartoon-like presentation. It is very large scale, and the students are very courageous to take on almost a fantasy that brings light from space through many layers of devices to cast it over the clouds above cities. This project is a true example of out-of-the-box thinking and the jury congratulates the winners for this novel approach.